ANDREW: It started out as a spec script for a popular TV show, and as I was writing it, I thought why waste time writing for another show when I could just create something on my own? The six characters seems to be the golden number for these types of shows, and I wanted to write something for people that I know, and I know a lot of creative, fun, and amazing actors.
You have a crazy talented cast, with David Dastmalchian and Jodie Sweetin as strangely estranged siblings Luke and Leia Pompeo, Mackenzie Astin and Tara Samuel as the chemistry-filled, disaster-waiting-to-happen duo Ethan and Nina, and Miracle Laurie and Trish Doolan anchoring the cast with their dry humor and much-needed dose of sanity as Mak and Bri. Can you talk about how you got the team together?
ANDY: Chad and I have been best friends since second grade, and he decided to jump on as producer after reading the script.
As I showed it to more people, more people wanted to help out with it and we decided to hold auditions through breakdown services.
We got recognizable talent that came in and liked it. Everyone came in and blew us away, Mackenzie came in in costume, and that was awesome. Jodie came in and knocked it out of the park.
I was a huge fan of Miracle Laurie’s from Dollhouse and, my word, after she came in we all said, “Well, we have a Mak.
Basically they each walked in and won the parts. We had eight thousand people submit, but we had six characters. They came in and won the roles.
Jodie Sweetin plays Leia Pompeo, the newly divorced wife of a Mandorran (Mandorranian?) prince. First of all, is Mandorra a real country?
ANDY: No, absolutely not. It’s like Mipos. It’s right next to Mipos.
ANDY: Perfect Stranger! Get on it, Kat!
Oh snap! Leia comes back stateside after living abroad for over a decade. How does she adjust to a post 9/11 U.S.?
ANDY: Everything is very different and she’s actually the character that shows the mirror to our society so we can see our own ridiculous circumstances through comedy.
Leia herself adjusts very slowly and painfully. The dating situation and etiquette are challenging to her because when she left, she was a guy magnet, but men are’t pursuing women the same way they used to anymore, with texting and online dating all that.
She ends up going on lots of very bad dates. But that’s why we call it Singled Out. It’s mot about finding love, it’s about how we get in our own way and (hopefully) learn to get out of our own way.
It was a deliberate choice to pull Leia out of the United States before 9/11. Her character has no contact with anything outside their kingdom. So Leia's basically time travels from September 10th, 2001 to the present and becomes the comical fish out of water. She is completely unaware of how "politically correct" our society has become. Hopeful we can laugh at ourselves through her innocence.
How do you think the attitudes in Singled Out correlate to the way people relate to each other now?
ANDY:I know people like the characters. They’re extreme because it;s comedy, but their essence is grounded in reality from amalgamations of people we know. And each of them have a little bit of me in them.
Chad, what attracted you to the show?
CHAD: I think the series has legs to go far, and it’s got a great group of interesting characters.
Do you have a favorite character?
CHAD: It has to be Luke because he’s kind of the trouble maker of the group, and some of his antics are hilarious... and mildly based on me.
Based on you? How did that happen?
CHAD: The creator of the show has been my best friend for thirty-three years and when he created Luke, he pulled from a lot of my antics.
They get up to some pretty wild stuff in the pilot. Do you think Singled Out is relatable?
CHAD: Absolutely. I think the diversity of the characters is what’s gonna relate to almost for everybody in the audience. There’s a character for everybody.
ANDY: Everyone’s been single at one point or another, so that’s one of the most relatable things. It’s about being single no matter how hard you try.
|Trish Doolan, Jodie Sweetin, David Dastmalchian, Miracle Laurie, Mackenzie Astin, and Tara Samuel|
Andy is single, but your not, Chad.
CHAD: (laughs) No I’m double.
Do the characters and their circumstances still resonate with you?
CHAD: Yes, I went through those same things because I was single for quite some time myself... Like a long weekend, maybe? (laughs) So I can relate. I think everyone can. That’s the appeal!
And it is appealing! So what’s next, hot stuff? Or hot stuffs?
ANDY: Finishing writing the first season! I’ve already started the Halloween episode, like Treehouse of Horrors from The Simpsons. I always thought those were funny and scary. We’re shopping it around because we’re really trying to find the right fit. We believe this series can go the distance.
CHAD: I’m starting to work on a film called Last Wish, looking at financing and I’m talking to several studios about the project. There’s already some interest in it, so it’s a really exciting time for us!